Updated: March 8, 2014 11:06AM
The Affordable Care Act has two new options for health insurance. It expanded who qualifies for Medicaid and it created what’s known as an online marketplace at HealthCare.gov for Illinois residents, where they can search for what are supposed to be more affordable and more comprehensive insurance options. People who shop on the marketplace are supposed to receive tax credits on a sliding scale if they have income between 133 percent and 400 percent of the federal poverty level.
Why should I enroll if I’m currently uninsured?
Besides having coverage for a health problem that might arise, the Affordable Care Act requires you to have health insurance unless you are exempt. (Find more information on the exemptions here: healthcare.gov/exemptions/). Enroll by March 31 and you won’t face a penalty for not having health insurance. The penalty will increase each year, starting at $95 or 1 percent of your yearly household income if that is higher. In 2015, it goes up to 2 percent of income or $325 per person. In 2016 and later years, it’s 2.5 percent of income or $695 per person. After that, it is adjusted for inflation.
Where can I get help?
Find an enrollment event where you can sign up for the health insurance through the Affordable Care Act here: getcoveredillinois.gov/events/.
If you would prefer to make an appointment with a navigator, visit getcoveredillinois.gov/get-help/.
You can also call Get Covered Illinois at 866-311-1119 or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services call center at 800-318-2596.